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This Christmas, plenty of people will find DNA tests under the tree. 

They’re easy to use — just send 23andMe, Ancestry, or one of their competitors your spit, and in exchange you’re promised a detailed breakdown of your heritage. For a little extra cash, you can learn about your genetic health risks, too. 

23andMe and Ancestry are privately held companies that don’t disclose sales numbers. But ads for them are all over the internet these days. Last year, Ancestry claimed it sold 1.6 million kits (which regularly start at $99) in the four days leading up to Cyber Monday. 

The appeal is obvious. It’s fascinating to learn where your family is from. And when it comes to your health, the more you know, the better, right? Well, before you send in your saliva, you might want to know a few things.  Read more…

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